DISUSED police boxes in Sheffield have gone on sale to raise cash for police chiefs trying to cope with a £40 million reduction in funding for the county’s force over the next four years.
They are being advertised as ideal for “savvy buyers” wanting small properties in prime retail and residential hotspots.
The eight police boxes on the market include one in Fitzalan Square in the city centre and others in sought-after residential locations such as Ecclesall and Broomhill.
The city centre unit is near Sheffield’s transport interchange and Castle Market and similar-sized venues that have become small takeaway food outlets, while the Ecclesall police box fronts on to Ecclesall Road South.
The other boxes are located in Crookes, Darnall, Totley Brook, Wadsley Bridge and Wincobank.
Rebecca Schofield, from commercial property consultants Knight Frank, which is acting as agents for South Yorkshire Police, said: “Police boxes often attract a lot of interest thanks to their history, their convenient locations and, of course, the Doctor Who association.
“However, they can be used in a variety of ways such as a small office or storage space.
“In the past people have acquired disused police boxes and turned them into a small retail outlet or a kiosk and many of these Sheffield sites could also present an opportunity for redevelopment, subject to necessary planning consent.”
The former police posts are all single storey brick or stone-built buildings and range in size from 56 square foot to 430 sq ft. Most have kitchen and toilet facilities.
Police boxes were used by bobbies on the beat until the mid 1960s, when personal radios were introduced to make it easier for them to keep in touch with bosses and colleagues.
David Livingstone, South Yorkshire Police’s head of facilities management, said: “The advent of mobile phones and BlackBerrys mean officers no longer require police boxes for reporting when they’re out on the beat.
“This has prompted us to put these properties on the market so they can be put to alternative good use in communities and the city centre.”
Anyone interested in finding out more should call Rebecca on 0114 2729750 or email firstname.lastname@example.org